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Stoke v Southampton

Saturday, 30th September 2017

Match Report 
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The equaliser meant a lot to Maya Yoshida

Match Report

IBO Reporter : OneBeat

'I didn’t think I’d be doing any match reports this season, since giving up my season ticket I have filled the time with other stuff, and although I always try to at least listen to Saints games, I don’t always succeed. So I guess I shouldn’t have been surprised that since agreeing to do this report my Saturday became full with things that meant I wouldn't be in the best place to follow the game. I had planned to spend the afternoon at home with a stream, but as it was, I left my house before 11am and didn’t get home until almost 6pm. All I had was my phone and the hope that where I was would have wifi.

First surprise of the day came when the line-ups were announced and Van Dijk was starting in place of Hoedt. Of course Van Dijk at his best is a cut above everyone else, but at this stage of the season does he deserve to be starting? Especially when Hoedt has started his season with us pretty well. Also, once again, Shane Long was starting in place of Gabbiadini.

As 3pm came around I was just parking the car in an underground carpark, radio reception wasn’t great, but I could just make out Adam Blackmore starting his commentary. Minutes later I got myself settled in Woolston’s Mettricks with the family and there was free WiFi, yipee. Sadly, although it connected, I was unable to load any web pages, so I turned it off and went with 4G. We had one phone following the score and text commentary, while I tried to get a stream working. It took me half an hour to get the game, all the while fending off adverts for 25 year old Russian women who all wanted to meet me, apparently.

When we did get to see the game, it was a pretty good picture, although the small display (I don’t have one of those new fangled phones with the huge screen) meant that which player was on the ball wasn’t always clear. Still, it seemed that Saints were playing some good possession football, but ultimately were not be able to find that final ball that gives the forward a chance. Despite that, I was becoming quite confident that it was only a matter of time and we would get it right sooner rather than later.

Then Stoke scored.

Moments before, Diouf looked to be at death’s door after falling over when he got near that notorious Saints hard man Tadić, but there he was heading in from a corner. All very frustrating, but at the same time very Saints.

It was to get worse soon after when Van Dijk pulled at Saido Berahino in the area and he went down, even watching on the small screen it looked an obvious penalty and so no surprise when the ref pointed to the spot. Now, when we’d seen the line ups before the game, I’d made a comment that Berahino hadn’t scored for Stoke yet, and here he was waiting to take a penalty against us. How very typical. But we needn't have worried, Forster made a good save and we cleared the ball. Maybe things were turning our way at last.

At half time the stream stopped while we were getting on with our family afternoon of chips, veggie burgers, tea and birthday cake, and checking our various Fantasy teams’ current points.

I spent ten minutes of the second half trying to get the stream going again, but with no luck, so I decided to go old school ceefax style, and follow the rest of the game with a text commentary. It was all “Shane Long heads wide”, “Block from Stoke defence”, “Lemina shoots wide from distance” and “The home team have had 36% of the play, the away team have had 64% of the play.” The difference grew in Saints favour as the minutes ticked by without it ever saying anything about the Stoke keeper making a save. Then, there it was; “G O O O O A L Yoshida scores with a volley.”

I refilled my cup with mint tea, took another chip and sat back waiting for Saints to finally make their statistical domination count.

The game carried on in much the same vein, lots of “Shot fired wide” or “Attempt blocked” and “The away team have had 70% of the play.” Then it was “Substitution for Stoke Peter Crouch replaces Saido Berahino.” The response round the table was pretty universal; “Bloody Crouch will score!” So on we went, refreshing every few seconds until “G O O O O A L Crouch scores for Stoke.” “Bugger, bugger, bugger, bugger…”

There was still plenty of time left for “Shot by Austin cleared off the line”, “Shot by Gabbiadini blocked” and “Corner swung in by Bertrand” which then lead to no further update. As the five minutes of added on time went to seven, and all the other Premier League games started to end we were left hoping for a late twist. Reports of West Ham and Watford scoring late to win and draw games came in and we hoped for something similar, surely we weren’t going to lose this one? But, inevitably, the FT came up at the top of the page and that was that.

My instant reaction was “I hate football.” I don’t, of course, and I don’t hate Saints, I’m just frustrated that we have some really good players, but it’s just not happening at the moment. There’s a stupid International Break now, but I know that when the next game comes along, I’ll have the same hope that this is the one when it all clicks.

Oh, and Home team 30% Possession Away team 70% Possession (29/71 according to the BBC - channonite), but we had 21 shots, with only three on target.

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Virgil Van Dijk started for Saints, but gave away a penalty for a tackle on Berahino


1 Butland

6 Zouma

20 Cameron

5 Wimmer

18 Diouf - (Johnson 90'+3')

4 Allen - Booked 30'

24 Fletcher

3 Pieters

22 Shaqiri (Afellay 87')

10 Choupo-Moting

9 Berahino (Crouch 70')


8 Johnson

12 Tymon

14 Afellay

16 Adam

25 Crouch

32 Sobhi

33 Grant


44 Forster

2 Cédric

3 Yoshida

17 van Dijk

21 Bertrand

14 Romeu - Booked 56'

18 Lemina (Austin 86')

11 Tadić - Booked 52'

8 Davis Boufal 61'

22 Redmond (Gabbiadini 67')

7 Long


6 Hoedt

10 Austin

13 McCarthy

16 Ward-Prowse

19 Boufal

20 Gabbiadini

23 Højbjerg

Season 2017-18

Stoke 2

  • Diouf 40'
  • Crouch 85'

Southampton 1

  • Yoshida 75'

Referee : Mike Jones

Attendance : 29,285


  • Stoke 29%
  • Saints 71%


  • Stoke 17
  • Saints 21

Shots on Target

  • Stoke 6
  • Saints 3


  • Stoke 5
  • Saints 6


  • Stoke 11
  • Saints 10

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Mauricio Pellegrino had plenty to think about after this performance